SAVE hosts third annual Greenhouse Growers Sale

SAVE held a plant sale on May 7. This was the club’s first “normal” plant sale since the beginning of the pandemic.


Arrowhead photo by Melanie Vincent

A growing community…Showing off the plants, sophomore Emily Rychlak offers local resident John Wilson a zucchini plant for sale. The plant sale in the greenhouse allows the community to interact with students.

In hopes of raising money for their club, SAVE hosted their third annual plant sale in the greenhouse on May 7 from 9 a.m.- 1 p.m.
According to SAVE (Students Against Violating the Earth) co-advisor Kim Wilson, the Greenhouse Growers branch of SAVE had been working since the beginning of the school year on preparation for the plant sale.
The club was sent a catalog from the company Gro ‘n Sell, located in Chalfont, where they purchase the seedlings for the sale each year.
“Just based on what people have asked for in the past, or [plants] we know that have grown well in the past, that’s basically what we [chose] to grow,” Wilson said.
This year, the club sold plants like lantana, coleus, petunias, dahlias and poppies.
After selecting what plants they wanted to sell, the club received young versions of those plants and began to grow them in the greenhouse in the months leading up to the sale.
According to Wilson, “a very consistent” group of students helped to prepare for the sale during the Greenhouse Growers meetings all year. Among the group of dedicated students is freshman Cate Haigh.
“We [watered] them each week, we [pruned] them, all that kind of stuff to make sure [they were] ready to be sold to anyone who [came,]” Haigh said.
The brand-new aquaponics branch of SAVE helped with the sale for the first time, as well.
According to aquaponics president Sophia Tamburrino, they sold hand-painted garden rocks to raise money for aquaponics.
Aquaponics vice-president Helen Spigel saw selling the rocks only as one of the ways to benefit the club.
To Spigel, it was also a perfect way to educate the public about what an aquaponics system is and what the club is doing at the school.
“One of the big reasons we [wanted] to come is because [we] feel like a lot of people don’t really know about aquaponics,” Spigel said.
Unfortunately, members of the aquaponics division of SAVE could not attend the sale due to an unforeseen quarantining.
Overall, the sale’s main goal was to raise money for the SAVE club and the greenhouse as a whole.
According to Wilson, the money that Greenhouse Growers raised will go to general tools, propane to heat the greenhouse and possibly a new system to control the temperature inside the greenhouse.
Aquaponics will use the money they raised to help streamline their club and add structure to what they do.
Both groups have goals for the future of their clubs and plant sales to come.
“I’d like for the growers to start growing more native plants,” Wilson said, “so we can start educating the public more about native plants and the importance of growing things that are native to Pennsylvania.”
According to Spigel and Tamburrino, aquaponics will continue to develop the produce that they grow with their system.
“Our goal for next year is to actually get the produce ready for consumption,” Tamburrino said. “Our main goal right now is to get it to a point where we can sell it and get it to the FCS department of the school.”
Sophomore Emily Rychlak thought that the rain may have affected the success of the sale, but they still raised about $1,300 to pay for more plants and support the greenhouse.
Learning support teacher Amanda Capaldi and Harleysville resident Bobbi Capaldi attended the sale.
“We like to support you guys,” Amanda said, “and we like to have a garden.”